As I've talked about here, I successfully hacked away at my Christmas list and personal shopping list during the online Black Friday weekend craziness. One item I finally pulled the trigger on for myself was the much-raved-about Vapour Organics Aura Cheek Stain. I bought it in Impulse since I was looking for a blue-red color that blended well.
First of all, I love this company's dedication to natural beauty and eco-conscious endeavors. Their products are 70% certified organic, 100% natural, recycled packaging, products created using wind and solar power, Leaping Bunny certified, etc etc. Vapour Organics is truly impressive in the many many ways they show dedicated to creating organic/natural/environmentally conscious products.
My initial impression was that I just don't think the Impulse stain was anything fantastic. I do like that it is a stain--when it fades it doesn't get blotchy, and for me it works well as both a cheek and lip stain. The product stays put fine and imbues color fine, but isn't any better than other products I've tried. The red looks more blueish swatched out on my arm than on my lips, but that may just be my coloring. From some reviews I read, I expected my skin to look magically kissed by angels or for the lip stain to solve the global energy crisis, or something. Not so. $25 seemed awfully expensive for the very average, although satisfactory, results that this stain provides.
However, in thinking a little more about the product, I realized something: if I'm going to be serious about this natural beauty thing, and trying to be more environmentally conscious, maybe this is the price I need to pay, in a literal sense and otherwise. Meaning, perhaps the product is a little spendier than other items I've used with very similar results. But you can bet your ass that very few of those other products boast such an impressive list of accomplishments, like Vapour's organic certification and Leaping Bunny certification. It takes a company a lot of money to dedicate oneself such measures (I should know, I grew up on an organic farm). These production costs trickle down to the product pricing. Maybe the money I paid wasn't such a large sum for all of the environmental initiatives Vapour has undertaken. Although I don't like the $25 price tag necessarily, I like even less companies who take my $5, or $15, or whatever, and put petroleum or formaldehyde in their skincare products, or leave a huge carbon footprint via their production practices while repping themselves as an eco-friendly company.
Are there other products available that do the same job for cheaper? Most definitely. Start on Etsy.
Are there other products that do the same job for cheaper while supporting the sustainable, organic practices of Vapour Organic Beauty? I'd be willing to bet that there are not.
Full disclosure: I returned this product (oh, and another great thing about the company--30 day return policy, no questions asked!). But only because I have a brand new baby niece that I'd rather spend my money on right now. In the future, when I have a little more expendable cashflow, I'd be happy to support Vapour Organics once again.